…one part of the North Island of New Zealand, in fact.

Yes, next week I’ll be popping over to our comparatively near neighbours and meeting other Tuesday Poets, and particularly Tim Jones, with whom I am editing The Stars Like Sand: Australian Speculative Poetry.

We will be making final selections for the anthology, from the approximately nine million on our two lists of ‘must haves’. I’m also one of four poets reading at Au Contraire, a science fiction convention in Wellington.

And I hope to sneak off from poetry duties long enough to see a dead Colossal Squid on display, and also to see some live, medium-sized birds.

I really can’t wait. (That is not sarcastic, for once, by the way.)

I have visited New Zealand once before when I was a teenager on a school trip, and have vague memories of an extremely racist bus driver, a wool museum (like Australians really don’t have enough wool and need to visit other people’s wool museums), and the smell of Rotorua.

I look forward to contrasting Canberra with Wellington. The populations of the two cities are about the same. That fact says a little more about Canberra, I think, than Wellington.

So busy have I been preparing Vast Lists of speculative poetry that I have no poem to post this week, and next week may be dodgy too, as I’ll be buying things for Wellington.

Wool things, mostly.